Brighton Music Conference returned for its 3rd year to the Brighton Dome on Thursday and Friday 14/15th April 2016.

Over both days, the conference focused on music trends and technologies, split between Panel Debates, Q&A’s, Tech Showcases and their Exhibition Floor.

Some of the panels featuring experienced industry figures covering the latest trends and topics included the likes of Careers In Music, Producer Q&A, Beatport Label Summit, How To Get Gigs – Kick Start Your DJ Career And Keep Going, Music Sampling – The Right Context and The Rise & Fall Of EDM, amongst various others.

We attended the ‘Your Brand Is Everything’ panel, where the following advice was given from the various experts about growing and maintaining your brand in the current music industry; Marcus Barnes, Journalist, “this is a massive global industry – you’ll be overlooked if your brand doesn’t stand out from the crowd. Your press shots and logo all need to be great, a good example of someone who has struck a good balance is Eats Everything.” Jessica Rowe from Level Theory added, “you have to create a good brand, think like a businessman as well as an artist. Be confident about yourself, it’s important to know yourself and how want to be seen by other people in the industry.” Tim Binns from New State Entertainment said, “have a clear identifiable logo, be original and unique”, before Tom Nettleton from Paramount added, “stick to your own identity. If you’re not doing that then people will see through it if you’re jumping on a band wagon. Richie Hawtin is the king of branding with his black clothes, black dot etc. People are drawn to it. He’s a clever and good businessman. Quality music and good branding will get noticed.”

Afterwards, we attended the ‘How To Construct A DJ Set’ panel, where Prok & Fitch gave the following advice; “stay original as a DJ. We produce our own edits, by taking breaks out, adding more rolling to be original and unique. We never prepare DJ sets, only the first track, what we play after that depends on vibe on crowd. Our advice is to practice a lot, listen to lot of music and be original.” Russ Yallop added, “I spend 4 days a week producing, and 1 day finding tracks. You need to live and breathe the scene, be at clubs all the time. You’ll be defined by the music you release, at the end of the day, you need to produce.”

Later that night we seen Russ Yallop put his words into action as he played at the Wunderground event at Horatio’s bar on the Brighton Pier. He played alongside Enzo Siffredi, playing a set of house/techno including, “ONNO & Reelow – Don’t Stop (Pawsa remix), Xavier Montrier – Preston Way and Kevin Over – DJengis.

On Friday, we attended the Dance Media in 2016 panel, and cups of coffee were the order of the day for this 11am talk! Mikey McGuire , publisher of hugely popular dance music satire website Wunderground, said, “the dance media scene is healthier than ever. You can set up a word press site, have a bit of talent and push yourself if you’re dedicated. The trend in terms of making revenues is heading towards paid sponsors. Few revenue streams- any revenue stream you can- varied. For example, Smirnoff’s partnership with Mixmag is subtle. Dance music is brand focused. Brands are falling over themselves to work with dance music.” Ralph Moore – editor at large at Mixmag and Moore Media added; “Smirnoff came to Mixmag to host parties – people want to watch DJs. We host a regular a Friday Mixmag Lab and DJs are falling over themselves to play it. Labels and PR used to have all of the influence in dance music, now the media does.”

Over on the Exhibition Floor companies were showcasing their own latest equipment and technologies for the future from the likes of Yamaha, Pioneer, Roland, Ableton and lots more. We had a great couple of days enjoying the various exhibitions, panels and parties, and whether you’re just starting out in the music industry or an experienced industry professional, Brighton Music Conference is definitely a must for 2017!

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